DIY Portable Hydroponic Planter Aka PortaPlanter

Introduction: DIY Portable Hydroponic Planter Aka PortaPlanter

About: I'm a student from India who loves electronics and DIY!

Hello everyone!

This is an indoor hydroponics planter which is supposed to encourage a healthy diet, by making it a lot easier to grow your own herbs in your kitchen. It waters the plant when the pump is turned on, and the excess water is drained from the plant and is directed into a nutrient water reservoir. This planter can be made with commonly available things at home and is a good way to spend time away from our screens during lockdown. This project does not use soil but uses cocopeat, which is available in most of the nurseries.

Build time- 2 hours

Build complexity - Medium


Materials required

Tin cans x 2

transparent tubing ~ 30cm

Water pump x 1

Dry cocopeat

Tools required

Hot glue gun


Step 1: How It Works


So the planter contains 2 tins stacked on top of each other (and glued), and is connected with each other with a tube. The tin on the top contains the cocopeat while the tin on the bottom is the water reservoir which contains the nutrient solution. A pump is attached to the lower tin with the help of some hot glue.


When the pump is turned on, water is sucked from the lower tin and is pumped into the top tin which contains the plant. when the soil is sufficiently hydrated, excess water is drained from the top tin to the lower tin(water reservoir). Here's a tinkerCAD design and a rough sketch for you to understand better.

Step 2: Making the Holes

The planter requires 4 holes,

2 holes to connect the top and bottom tin

2 holes for the inlet and outlet of the pump to pump water.

As this project uses tin cans, no drill is required to make holes, a scissor will do the job easily.

Step 3: The Piping System

Follow the tinkerCAD design for the piping system.

As this is an indoor planter, there must be no leaks. So, waterproofing with hot glue or epoxy is advised.

The connections are as follows:

pump inlet ----connected to----- bottom hole of bottom tin

pump outlet ----connected to---- top hole of top tin

bottom hole of top tin ----connected to---- top hole of top tin

This sounds confusing, but on seeing the video, It'll be much more clear

Step 4: Preparing the Cocopeat

What is cocopeat

cocopeat is something that is used in hydroponics which is derived from the husk of a coconut . Unlike soil which has nutrients and minerals, cocopeat can only absorb water and provide support to a plant.

Where to buy?

You can either buy from here -->


From your nearby nursery.

But wherever you buy it from, it will be sold in a block form, and we must powder it with a hammer or a knife.

On obtaining the powdered cocopeat like the image above, we must add water to it, to make it moist and expand.

Step 5: The Nutrient Solution

This is the nutrient that I use:

follow the instructions on the back of the packet to prepare the nutrient solution

On obtaining both, the nutrient solution and the dry cocopeat,

add the dry cocopeat to the top tin like said before and pour 600ml of the nutrient solution little by little.

On pouring, you might hear a sound of water trickling. This is because the excess water gets drained into the reservoir for later use.

Step 6: Done!

You can paint the tins like I have with some pray paint after covering the tubes and the pump with some masking tape.

planting herbs will be the best option with this setup.

Here I have planted a Tulsi sapling and its growing very well for the past 10 days.

Make sure you keep the plant somewhere sunny and turn on the pump with a 9 volt battery everyday morning for about 40 seconds - 1 minute.

Thanks for reading!

make sure to subscribe to my youtube channel and vote for me in the "Gardening Contest"

Until then,


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    1 year ago

    very cool, when I saw tinkercad you stressed me out because I was aiming for the judges prize too.


    Reply 1 year ago

    Damn...don't get stressed 😂
    Anyways best of luck!

    and thanks for the comment !